Harlequin HQN, Jun 19 2012, $7.99
On the beach in Mendocino, Declan the forest ranger and his dog Liam walk as they do every morning so he can clear his head and prepare to deal with people; something he hates as he has become a recluse. He hears a loud thump just behind him; when he turns around he sees a battered naked woman covered in blood and tattoos, and a leg at an impossible angle. Though he wonders where she could have come from he calls 911.
Feeling obsessed and definitely out of character, Declan visits Jane Doe at the hospital. She informs Declan that she has no name, only knows of Asmodeus and The Grandmother who raised her, and has no concept of what a hospital is. He calls her his Angel and takes her home with him to teach her to survive a cruel world. She fears her mentor will come for her to finish the job for her failing at the gift of seduction that he trained her for and he will also hurt her current benefactor.
This is a fascinating romantic urban fantasy starring an intriguing female lead; Declan’s issues with his father and others seem minor compared to Angel’s hellish existence. Fast-paced from the moment Angel seems to have fallen from the sky, fans will enjoy this drama but a deeper look into the heroine’s state of mind after rejection and abandonment by those who she believed love her and whom she loved would have intensified the storyline. Still with a twisting climax, readers will want to know where Angel fell from “grace” onto the beach near the sea.